TMS plans largest HD video board

FORT WORTH, Texas -- Texas Motor Speedway announced Monday night that the racetrack has partnered with Panasonic to create what they say is the largest high-definition video board in the world.

The board will be displayed on the backstretch of the track. It will be 218 feet long and 94.6 feet wide (nearly the wingspan of a 747), and will stretch nearly 12 stories in the air. It's more than 20,000 square feet.

Once completed -- and race officials say it will be in time for the first NASCAR Sprint Cup weekend in April 2014 -- it will be larger than the board at Charlotte Motor Speedway (16,000 square feet) and larger than the one sitting at Reliant Stadium in Houston, which recently overtook the board at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

"Jerry [Jones] and the Cowboys made this a big-screen market," TMS president Eddie Gossage said. "Some high schools had bigger screens than we did. It was time to do something."

The speedway has nicknamed the board "Big Hoss TV," and officials note it will be larger than the Lincoln Memorial and that nine Alamos could fit inside the screen area. It is 108 tons of HDTV, weighing more than seven elephants.

TMS also announced its schedule for the 2014 season and has made a change so as not to conflict with the NCAA Final Four at AT&T Stadium. The Texas 500 will be Sunday, April 6, since there are no Final Four games that day. It originally was scheduled for Saturday night.

The IndyCar Series comes to TMS two weeks after the Indianapolis 500, June 5-7, and NASCAR returns for the eighth race of the Chase for the Sprint Cup on Nov. 2.